Polk County, Tennessee facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Polk County, Tennessee
Map
Map of Tennessee highlighting Polk County
Location in the state of Tennessee
Map of the USA highlighting Tennessee
Tennessee's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded November 28, 1839
Seat Benton
Largest town Benton
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

442 sq mi (1,145 km²)
435 sq mi (1,127 km²)
7.7 sq mi (20 km²), 1.7%
Population
 - (2010)
 - Density

16,825
39/sq mi (15/km²)
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website: www.polkgovernment.com
Named for: James K. Polk

Polk County is a county located in the southeastern corner of the U.S. state of Tennessee. As of the 2010 census, the population was 16,825. Its county seat is Benton. The county was created November 28, 1839 from parts of Bradley and McMinn counties. The county was named after then-governor (and future president) James K. Polk.

Polk County is included in the Cleveland, TN Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Chattanooga-Cleveland-Dalton, TN-GA-AL Combined Statistical Area.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 442 square miles (1,140 km2), of which 435 square miles (1,130 km2) is land and 7.7 square miles (20 km2) (1.7%) is water. The total area is 1.65% water. Located in the extreme southeastern corner of Tennessee, it is the state's only county to share borders with both Georgia and North Carolina.

Much of the terrain of eastern Polk County is mountainous, including Big Frog Mountain, constituting part of the southern Appalachian Mountains. Large tracts of Polk County are part of the Cherokee National Forest. The Ocoee River, site of whitewater slalom events in the Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympic Games, runs through Polk County and is vital to one of the county's major industries, whitewater rafting. The calmer Hiwassee River, a tributary of the Tennessee River which flows through northern Polk County, is also used for rafting and tubing.

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

  • Big Frog Wilderness (part)
  • Cherokee National Forest (part)

State protected areas

  • William L. Davenport Refuge
  • Ducktown Basin Museum and Burra Burra Mine (state historic site)
  • Fourth Fractional Township Wildlife Management Area
  • Hiwassee/Ocoee Scenic River State Park

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1840 3,570
1850 6,338 77.5%
1860 8,726 37.7%
1870 7,369 −15.6%
1880 7,269 −1.4%
1890 8,361 15.0%
1900 11,357 35.8%
1910 14,116 24.3%
1920 14,243 0.9%
1930 15,686 10.1%
1940 15,473 −1.4%
1950 14,074 −9.0%
1960 12,160 −13.6%
1970 11,669 −4.0%
1980 13,602 16.6%
1990 13,643 0.3%
2000 16,050 17.6%
2010 16,825 4.8%
Est. 2015 16,773 −0.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2014
USA Polk County, Tennessee.csv age pyramid
Age pyramid Polk County

As of the census of 2010, there were 16,825 people, 6,653 households, and 4,755 families residing in the county. The population density was 38.7 people per square mile. There were 7,991 housing units at an average density of 18.4 per square mile.

There were 6,653 households out of which 26.10% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.60% were married couples living together, 9.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.30% were non-families. 25.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 2.96.

In the county, the population was spread out with 22.14% under the age of 18, 5.0% from 20 to 24, 10.20% from 25 to 34, 21.60% from 35 to 49, 21.70% from 50-64, and 17.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42.5 years.

In 2000, the median income for a household in the county was $29,643, and the median income for a family was $36,370. Males had a median income of $27,703 versus $21,010 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,025. About 9.70% of families and 13.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.80% of those under age 18 and 18.40% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

Cities

Town

Ghost Towns

  • Probst
  • Bonnie
  • McFarland
  • Sylco
  • Hidgon's Store
  • Alaculsy
  • Old Dutch Settlement
  • Broad Shoals
  • Smith Creek Village
  • Apalachia
  • Apalachia Station

Unincorporated Communities


Polk County, Tennessee Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.